Inspiring Others

Chapter Ten

Inspiring Others

Singing a New Song

Photo by Andy Chilton on Unsplash

This morning, while listening to some deep-rooted words, I was taken back to childhood while listening to and singing a favorite song:

Sings a New Song by Dan Schutte

Sing a new song unto the Lord; let your song be sung from mountains high. Sing a new song unto the Lord, singing alleluia.

Yahweh’s people dance for joy. O come before the Lord. And play for him on glad tambourines, and let your trumpet sound.

Sing a new song unto the Lord; let your song be sung from mountains high. Sing a new song unto the Lord, singing alleluia.

Rise, O children, from your sleep; your Savior now has come. He has turned your sorrow to joy and filled your soul with song.

Sing a new song unto the Lord; let your song be sung from mountains high. Sing a new song unto the Lord, singing alleluia.

Glad my soul, for I have seen the glory of the Lord. The trumpet sounds; the dead shall be raised. I know my Savior lives.

Sing a new song unto the Lord; let your song be sung from mountains high. Sing a new song unto the Lord, singing alleluia.

I had almost forgotten this tune until a good friend spoke about change. Change not for the world but self. It is through self we can change the world around us. My friend spoke of Saul before he became Paul and how he used to see things. Then one day, on the road to Damascus, a bright light filled his being, and Saul was given new sight. As he stepped into the light, he forever became known as Paul…a follower of Jesus.

I then began relating this story to a time escorting a friend up to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, a magical place where mystery and awe collide. We arrived up North without a plan and no idea why we had come. We did know something was about to happen…but the uncertainty was present.

We began unloading our burdens during a talking circle around a sacred fire, just like bringing our sins to a mighty table where we are forgiven, offering them up — to a higher place of existence and freeing us from their burdens. We poured our sins into the fire and were given a new beginning, a birthing, if you will. Then I received a tap on the shoulder, “You ready?” Ready for what?!

We excused ourselves to another sacred place, that of a longhouse, with a smaller structure inside. Likings of an inner room, this inner structure was only reachable on our hands and knees. We must crawl into the womb of mother earth.

The door is closed once in the womb, and ancestors are invited in. Ancient grandfathers were invited in, and all shared medicine. As the medicine from the grandfathers emitted into the inner room, thunder began to sound. My eyes, which I could see before entering, burned from their sockets.

With eyes closed and no sight, I listened to songs of creation, thanksgiving, prayers of peace and love, and finally, a charge to go forth into the world anew. Others had visions of what they had seen, but I was to unsee what was once seen for me.

Exiting the womb, we were given a new start in life. All retired for the evening, but I was to remain…for unknown reasons. It was 2 a.m., and the stars filled the skies. I could see the Pleiades or Seven Sisters and heard a faint invite, “come sit in the woods.” So I walked into the woods and noticed my eyesight as if it were daytime. In the middle of the night, I was able to see as if daytime! I ask the stars how this is possible, hearing reassuring voices, “That which you have seen before is no longer. From this day forward, you will be given new sight, with the ability to see that which most cannot. The night shall become day, and the unknown shall be known unto you. Your given name shall represent Owl…seer of the unseen.”

So, as I sat there listening to a friend speak, transported back into time, reminded of what was to come in the future. In essence, Be Here Now takes on a whole new meaning. With a greater understanding of here and now, seeing past and future collide into present…I am given sight as to what might be or not be. With each new step forward, I am given a choice to step with care or push my way through.

Transported through a vessel of story, from old to new, I am given a glimpse into past and given sight of what may come. Although I am still present now, there is hope as to what may be. I am given a song to sing for all to hear, healing myself and allowing others to be healed.

A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song. ~Lou Holtz

Whatever our passions, whatever our dreams…may we follow them, singing the song of songs deep within our souls. We may not fully understand the path leading to such, but we assuredly live as authentic as possibly attainable. We are the birds, and a song of life remains…choose to sing it or choose to be sung by It.

Spiritual Exercise: Inspiring Others

1. Being a guide

As we journey along in our search for the meaning and purpose of our own lives, we create a deeper understanding of others and their life journeys. We are all seeking a place of happiness, but many of us have forgotten how to achieve it. What is it? It just is.

Through our understanding, we witness the understanding of others, yielding an opportunity to guide them along their path towards happiness. Pause for a moment, as assuredly there is excitement to our discovery; witness the struggles of self and others seeking their deepest desires. Tell them nothing, unless asked, and give a humble understanding of what may or may not have worked within our own lives. Instead of telling another, invite them to see things differently…allowing them to come to their truths about reality.

Our guidance of self shall display through our daily lives. As we go about our days in happiness, with others seeking happiness, we invite them to remain present. True guidance does not come from telling but through the invitation of self-discovery.

2. Providing a Service

Our greatest offering to the world is through service. It is through this channel of giving that we receive. Whatever work we are to do through the day, may it be through servitude for the greater good.

Our greatest avenue towards happiness is through servitude towards humanity. Whether great or small, we give back to the world through our humble hearts. What are we doing to serve others? What can we do?

Share a smile, lend a hand, and be there for another when in need. However that looks to you, do more of that. It is a win-win situation for all parties in any given situation. Is there negativity present? Acknowledge and allow it to pass. Is there gossip being passed? Diffuse it and share the good instead.

We take on a deeper understanding of others through our understanding of self. Through our faults, we accept the faults of others. Service can come from simply being kind and understanding to another.

Just for today, ask, “How might I better serve?”

3. Inspiring vs. Inspired

This is a great divine paradox. We unknowingly inspire others to challenge themselves to see through the heart’s eyes as we are inspired. How do we inspire others? There is nothing to be done but just be inspired. The universe will take care of the rest. Through our inspired living, others shall be inspired to hold their own space, making room for a deeper understanding of happiness.

If there is one thing we can do, encourage others to keep seeking their greatest desires. Whatever it may be, we can encourage them to follow their heart’s desires, accepting their inspiring tale.

Just for today, ask, “What is my greatest desire? How do I achieve this goal? How can I inspire others? Please write down this idea of inspiring hope for self and allow it to inspire others throughout the days ahead.

Much gratitude for those who take time to read, ponder, and allow the inner workings of self to come forward. Grateful for the feedback, love shared, and, more importantly, the Dance with Inspiration. Deep Peace.

Joseph Lieungh

Photo by Javardh on Unsplash

Finding Inner Peace


Finding Inner Peace

Defining Our Canvas

Photo by Mor Shani on Unsplash

Yesterday, I went to visit an old friend. It is strange because I have not seen him in twenty-eight years. I say “it is strange” loosely, as I know nothing is a mistake. So why did I visit him? It happened because I merely heard a voice whispering his name.

After hearing his name, all sorts of memories came forward. As joy and sadness assist recalling these stories, I immediately found myself in a healing circle. In healing circles or talking circles, it is a sacred moment where we share our deepest thoughts to whatever we are called to discuss. Often happens in a group setting. These memories did just that, and I had my own personal talking circle with others who are thought to be of spirit.

Having the afternoon off, I thought, “If he has time, I will give him a call.” So I did. Hey Bob, this is Joe…got a minute? “Joe?! From my childhood Joe?!” Yes, that Joe. “Dude, how the Hell are you?”

We talked for a little bit, and he invited me into his place of work for a chat. Now my head-mind is trying to figure out the ‘why,’ as I drove to his shop. He is a master painter who creates masterpieces for others. Sharing his gift, he is helping others find their happiness.

So I found his place of business, as I knew the neighborhood very well. It’s in the neighborhood we both grew up in. As we met each other on the street, he asked, “so what made you call?” I am not sure, but there is always a reason from my experience. “That is just too weird…not more than five minutes before you called, I was thinking about you.”

We entered his paint shop.

As we reminisce about our past, he excitedly shows me the process of his work. “I am not a fast-food restaurant, and my work often takes months for one project to complete. Like life, my work is a process that goes unrushed. We shouldn’t rush it.” I bet customers get antsy? “They do, but I remind them the work I do is a symbol of their life moving forward. Have patience, take time to enjoy that which you already have and for goodness sake, stop being in such a rush!”

Hearing him speak of his passion for creating works of art excited me, although I still am unaware of why we were to connect after all this time.

Will I see him again? Will we talk about re-creating more of the Canvas of Life? I am not sure what time will bring of this moment, but I am waking this morning with a bit more understanding of why I called him.

I woke from a dream filled with old acquaintances from childhood. At first, they were strangers challenging my authenticity, but then they became acquaintances whom I rode the school bus within High School. Have you ever had a dream where one scene was of one group of people, the next scene filled with familiar faces? Next, we were at a dinner party and ‘the others’ talked about things while challenging who I was and where I was going. I also recall being lucid in my dream and thinking, “this is why I called Bob! So that I can spark old memories and retrace my steps as to who I am and further pave who I am becoming.”

I know I have written about this before, as to retracing our steps or recalling our past life. As we retrace our steps, we ultimately recreate our future simultaneously. The whole purpose of talking circles is the same. So in my single encounter with an old friend, my past came forward, and the future was redefined. In a single encounter, I walked into the past and future simultaneously, unknowingly at the time…only to repaint a brighter future. Thanks, Bob!

After recalling the first dream, I immediately recalled another. However, I am not sure if this dream happened during nighttime or in the daytime (I often call this the real world, although I am not sure what is real anymore…Laughing at self).

This dream was about finding balance in self.

All I can remember is a scene of what appeared to be a commercial on television. I was sitting in a friend’s living room when a commercial came on about ‘receiving.’ To remain happy, we are to give. It is our life’s purpose. Finding the balance between giving and receiving is the key to this lesson. If all we do is receive without giving…then we remain unbalanced, failing to follow natural laws of the universe…ebb and flow, give and take, etc.

While the second recall happened first, it carried into the second dream of meeting old acquaintances.

I love my dreams!

As I sit at my desk recalling these dreams, I remember yesterday’s conversations. Often for me, not sure if it happens for you, my daytime leads into the nighttime, creating a new reality in the dream world…allowing me to recall my life story. In recalling, I can re-create the scenery and the future.

A conversation or meeting with an old friend creates thoughts of a specific time and place, allowing more healing to take place. A later conversation, with another friend, about finding purpose and balance through asking Creator to show the way humbly…well, I think that led to the first dream about giving and receiving. As the dream world comes to life, I am in awe, outlining the past and redefining the future in a single stroke of my fingers as the words are typed upon this screen.

So back and forth, I go in my thoughts. My life, past and future…what lay in store for the Canvas of Life, what lay in store for Stepping into the Canvas? I am not certain, but the re-write has begun, and the definitions of life are about to be written.

As I recall my story, I hope that you recall your own. Relive the past, recreate the present and future. It is my hope these words reach those who need them most. I hope that Stepping into the Canvas defines the steps we take daily: filling our days with purpose, infusing our steps with love. As we consciously move forward, taking note of the birds singing our song, the trees dancing in the wind or the skies changing from night to day…we are a part of the Great Canvas, and we contribute daily. What is your contribution for the day?

Stepping into the Canvas defining the Canvas, defining our own…

Spiritual Exercise: Finding Inner Peace

Clearing our conscience

Gaining clarity often means reliving past encounters looking for corrections or acceptance in any situation. With attached emotions to the past, we trigger events that may or may not trigger our physical pains of today. Asking for forgiveness can be as simple as asking the self for forgiveness but may require to call upon the past to relive it and ask the afflicted parties or those causing the pain.

To forgive self requires, or doesn’t require, a shift in consciousness and holding space for awareness of the pain that remains. Revisiting pain, we allow ourselves to open wounds that hold our physical pains in slumber. Reflecting and realizing that our present-day and who we are, is a result of the past experiences…whether painful or joyous, they have created the fire that burns within…allowing more desire for happiness to present itself. I am safe and free; I am strong because of my past experiences. No matter that past, the future is brighter because of those experiences. I am grateful.

If the pain remains, call upon the scene that inflicted the pain. Call the party involved or write a private letter. Whether actually delivering or burning the pain away through the sacred fire, it is releasing the pain that remains. There is freedom in asking for forgiveness. In asking, we are receiving.

We are the master painter, the master writer of this Canvas of Life.

When asking for forgiveness, we are healing a broken part of our being, a wound, if you will. In forgiving, we are blessing that portion of the pain that remains. Blessing this area of suffering, we are blessing and healing all involved.

Begin Searching

We have discussed taking the first steps into happiness. Now it is time to take the next. Through our desires, we continue to search for that blissful happiness. Through creating habits for personal happiness, we arrive each new day in a place of being and clarity: clarity of self and conditions which no longer pull our strings. We are cutting these strings one by one, literally and metaphorically!

Imagine now that we are a marionette: We have strings attached to our hands, controlling our every move; Strings to our feet causing us to go where we have been told to go; finally, strings connected to our heads, as if controlling our thoughts. The puppet master is the conditioned response or societal beliefs that we have adapted for our entire lives…time to cut these strings, freeing self from past beliefs. See the strings and imagine one by one we are cutting them. Sit with this for a moment…how does it feel? Is there a sense of freedom? Liberation?

Now it is time to seek that which is missing in our lives.Laughing at ourselves, we realize nothing is missing…we forget. This will come with practice. Keep seeking happiness and apply simple steps , we are activating a part of our brain that is not afraid to seek outside the box that we once dwell. It is through our hearts we enter the key to paradise.

Seek, and ye shall find. Knock, and the door shall be opened unto thee. Matthew 7:7

Finding It…now what?

This place of knowing comes with feelings of bliss, peace and overwhelming joy. For no apparent reason, our steps are lighter, happier and the Canvas of Life appears to be more vibrant with color. When we arrive at this place, it is common for the head-mind to question “Now What?”

A Zen Master was approached by a disciple, “Master, what do we do when we reach enlightenment?” To which the master answered,

“Chop Wood, Carry Water.”

With each discovery of self or ‘aha’ moments, we come to a deeper level of knowing self and how universal laws coexist in our thoughts and being. We do not reach enlightenment. We remember that we are already enlightened beings. The past conditioning has fallen to the curb, and ideals for a brighter future remain.

We set out for deeper understanding as we return to our days’ work or self-practice. Truthfully, there is nothing to be done…but then again, “How is remaining where we are currently working out for us?”

With each step and ‘now what’ experiences, we celebrate, giving thanks for the lessons at hand. We seek further understanding, and undoubtedly the answers shall arrive. It is through our undoubted faith that we find our truths. Don’t feel the faith…practice this…

Start each morning with, “I know my day is filled with so many challenges, but I will turn my attention to the things that bring me joy and gratitude. I rejoice for those events or things that take me away from joy and gratitude as I no longer wish to be ruled by those strings of attachment. I am free.”

Start with the intention of the day and throughout the day check-in with self. “How am I feeling? Am I free of the pain and suffering around me?” Then reset the next day, check-in and repeat this step. Do this for twenty-one days…this will create a new habit of happiness.

Much gratitude for those who take time to read, ponder, and allow the inner workings of self to come forward. Grateful for the feedback, love shared, and more importantly, the Dance with Inspiration. Deep Peace.

Joseph Lieungh

Photo by Javardh on Unsplash